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Workplace Policies

SCC: cocaine addicted employee involved in workplace accident dismissed for breach of policy, not drug use

Jurisdiction: - Alberta - All
Sector: - Mining

In a decision issued today - Stewart v. Elk Valley Coal Corp., 2017 SCC 30 - the Supreme Court of Canada tackled the difficult issue of when and on what basis an employer can dismiss an employee addicted to drugs.  


As set out by the SCC, these are the facts:

[1]   Ian Stewart worked in a mine operated by the Elk Valley Coal Corporation, driving a loader.  The mine operations were dangerous, and maintaining a safe worksite was a matter of great importance to the employer and employees  read more »

CP Railway CEO says company will challenge arbitrator’s order to reinstate "cocaine-using" locomotive engineer

Here's an interesting news release that Canadian Pacific Railway Limited issued on July 16, 2014 concerning an arbitrator's decision to order an employee re-instated:

Canadian Pacific Railway Limited (TSX/NYSE: CP) announced today it will be asking the Superior Court of Quebec to stay a July 14, 2014 decision by the Canadian Railway Office of Arbitration (CROA), which ruled a locomotive engineer, who consumed cocaine at a time and of a quantity which could impact his duties, must be reinstated.

CP also announced it will be appealing the agency's order to the Superior Court of Quebec asking it to overturn the decision.  read more »

Single incident of violent and threatening behaviour towards supervisor supported just cause termination

Jurisdiction: - Northwest Territories

In I & D Management Services Ltd v Mercredi, 2013 CanLII 89793 (NWT LSB), the Northwest Territories - Labour Standards Board determined that an employee's single incident of violent and threatening behaviour towards a supervisor supported just cause termination.

Specifically, the NWT LSB stated as follows:

Both parties to the dispute agreed that an altercation occurred.  The dispute was not directly related to work issues, but was about the relative merits of treatment centres and other personal issues.  All witnesses to the incident stated that Mr. Mercredi pushed Mr. Kerfont three times.  In his February 14, 2012 statement, Mr. Turcotte stated that Mr. Mercredi threw "a bottle of water at Ray hard".  In a statement made on the same day, Mr. Deforrest stated that Mr. Mercredi threw a cup of coffee at Mr. Kerfont.  read more »